As the Kansas Jayhawks and other teams take to the field, motorists have a new concern on the roads: the added risk of motor vehicle accidents. Car accidents are more likely to occur on football game days as a result of the increased chance motorists will encounter a driver who has been drinking.
Football fans need to be cautious and make smart choices, including avoiding impaired driving. Motorists can do little to protect themselves when they encounter a negligent drunk driver on the roads. Still, there are some basic safety tips drivers can practice to try to reduce the chances they will be injured in a drunk driving accident when football game day has arrived.
Wichita Drivers Face Greater Car Accident Risks on Game Days
The data is clear showing Wichita drivers do face added risks of impaired driving collisions on days when football games are played. One Department of Transportation warned there is a 13 percent rise in the number of people arrested for drunk driving on football days. Football game days have some of the highest levels of alcohol consumption of any day of the year, and ABC News reports one in 12 fans leaving a football stadium is legally intoxicated.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving also warns of a significant increase in the percentage of crashes on Super Bowl Sunday caused by an impaired driver. While the average is normally 31 percent of fatal crashes involving impaired drivers, on Super Bowl Sunday 43 percent of crashes involve a motorist who is over the legal blood alcohol limit.
What can drivers do if they want to reduce the chances of getting into a crash with an intoxicated football fan? Some safety best practices include:
- Staying sober yourself. If you are going to a game or watching football at a friend's house, avoid drinking too much alcohol.
- Consider acting as a designated driver, or arrange a designated driver. You should have someone lined up to help you get home before taking even a single drink. After you have had several, your judgment may be too impaired to make arrangements for a safe ride home.
- Pay careful attention on the roads on game days. You do not want to be distracted by a phone or other electronic device and be surprised by the actions of an impaired driver. If you watch others on the road around you, you can respond assertively if someone is putting you at risk.
- Report suspected impaired drivers. If you see someone who looks as if he may be operating under the influence of alcohol, let the police know.
- Try to avoid going close to stadiums on football game days when games let out. Staying away from the game is a good idea not just because of impaired drivers but also because of added traffic around the stadium.
All of these tips can help you to try to stay safe, but ultimately football fans will need to make responsible choices and ensure they do not drink too much and drive home. If football fans stop drinking and driving, lives will be saved this football season.